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ucme's avatar

What are the most abiding memories you retain from your first days at school?

Asked by ucme (39514 points ) January 15th, 2013

You may choose any year you wish, primary/elementary/secondary/high school.Good or bad memories, but mostly good I hope =0)

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39 Answers

Akua's avatar

Good Memory: In College I had a great time! I met my BFF and we are still friends to this day. Another friend of mine dreaded my hair for the first time during my Freshman year and I still wear my hair like this now. It was absolutely the best time in my life, like I met myself for the first time when I went to school.

Aesthetic_Mess's avatar

In Kindergarten, I remember going to the wrong classroom. No one else was in there, and I just stayed in there until someone walking by came and got me.
My first day of school was in the middle of third grade (I had moved). That first day, there was a fight in the cafeteria. It was an inner city school, and the first school fight I had seen. A little bit of shock that I quickly got over.
First day of seventh grade got me labeled as a terrorist.
I’ve had many first days because I’ve moved a lot.

bossob's avatar

The beginning of the school year in first and second grades. We had lots of kids in the neighborhood. We would all be wearing our new school clothes for the first time, our hair was freshly shorn, and we would gather on the sidewalk for pictures before we walked off to school in the cool, crisp autumn morning sun.

One neighbor kid had had surgery on both feet, and we would all help to pull him to school in his Radio Flyer red wagon. They didn’t have handicap ramps on the sidewalks in those days, so it was a team effort lifting him up and down the curbs.

It was an innocent time for me.

Seek's avatar

Looking at pictures, I can’t help but be disgusted at the godsawful outfit my mother put me in for my first day at Kindergarten. Primary blue sweater, primary blue skirt, neon frakking yellow stirrup leggings, and saddle shoes. I looked like the front cover of a Curious George book, or a Smurfburger sandwich when you add in the bright blonde hair.

Otherwise, my memories of Kindergarten don’t discriminate between days. I remember little things in vivid detail:

the time I was given the job of “teacher’s helper” – which meant it was my job to tie everyone’s shoes, because I was the only kid in the class that knew how to do it;

running like crazy from the kid who had poison ivy because we all thought it was a plague that would kill us all;

the first time I took a gender-discrimination stand because I wanted to play trucks, dammit, and I have a real kitchen to cook in at home, why would I want to mess with that pink plastic thing?

Pachy's avatar

I remember two thing very clearly from kindergarten—one, being sent out to the playground to sit by myself because I had refused to share a toy with another kid. And two, being told by the teacher that my drawing of a man wasn’t “right” because his arms and legs extended from his little oval body, which was also his head.

I honestly doubt the latter incident was to blame, but I’ve never been able to draw anything more than unpleasant little doodles.

lightsourcetrickster's avatar

I went to a boarding school in 1989. I was there until 1990. Prep school did nothing more than suck, wipe and blow. I got bullied pretty much from day one. Private school was a nightmare. Turned me into some big walking chicken afraid of standing on an orange crate. It took years of work to get past that and be able to stand up and be counted as someone who will give you shit if you start something. I would never let a child suffer at the hands of a private school and this particular one had a habit of checking mail to make sure you didn’t write worrying letters home if you were a daily border (that is to say someone who stayed there all the time until a holiday occurred. I went from border, to weekly border (stayed until Friday from Monday) to getting my ass out of there. I was there for a year. Longest year of my life. Prefects handed out stupid little punishments like running up and down this goddamn massive drive – it was like a good 600 meters each direction. Then there were black marks. Black marks were, you got detention during break, lunchtime and just before dinner. I had a couple of those. And you got to run that friggin drive too. But the one thing I remember the most, is that bastard Mr Pearson. I was late for one detention (which a particularly nasty piece of work prefect gave me for no reason) because of a music lesson. I tried to appeal to Mr Pearson’s sense of goodwill but he was having none of it and I got a full term of detentions. No breaks, no free time during lunch but just enough time to actually eat lunch when I got to the hall.
I was looking at friends reunited (I do NOT have an account nor do I ever want one), and there are lots of photos of people I remember just hating so much. I can’t remember their names anymore (except for one who was a real pain in the ass prefect) but yeah I remember the faces. Happy times they were not.

I have issues.

ETpro's avatar

The smell of so many people in one room. It must have been a matter of child hygiene or how often immature digestive systems purged themselves within the room in days gone by. I recall no such smell in the church I attended, even though it held far more kids than the first grade class I attended. But ooh, that smell of first grade.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I remember….

…. the walks to school with friends, there are some lovely memories, when I enjoyed the weather and was so happy to be alive.

…my second grade teacher telling a little Spanish girl that she couldn’t go potty and the little girl peed her pants and cried, so I went home and told my mom, she said I could get up and leave before that ever happened to me.

…loving learning division and music class.

zenvelo's avatar

First Grade: Getting on the bus to go over to the Canal Zone for school in a brand new American building.

Fifth Grade: New school in a town that had just had a new development get populated. There were 12 new kids in class. My assigned “buddy” was a friend off and on and went to college with me. We joined the same fraternity. To bad he had some issues that caused him to drop out after 1 year.

College: Going to the keggers for fraternity rush, I ended up joining a fraternity which I’d had no intention of doing before that.

mazingerz88's avatar

First day in kindergarten. Bit scary but having your own little chair and desk was empowering. My beloved aunt outside the room with other moms, making sure we’re ok.

muppetish's avatar

In first grade, the lights were out because our teacher was using the projector to show us some-such thing and then my kindergarten teacher walked in. She said hi to all the kids she recognized from the year before and the pauses by me and tells me, quietly, “no more crying this year”. It upset me. I felt singled out and picked on. I was an emotional kid and cried a lot, but nobody likes it to be pointed out to them. Especially since she had told my mum that I wasn’t emotionally ready to move forward to first grade.

Ugh.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@muppetish That wasn’t nice of her!

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Halloween senior year was right after Animal House came out, so a bunch of us wore sheets like togas, and workboots that day. We all piled in to my mother’s car that morning and came over to where I live now and went to MacDonalds for breakfast. I brought along a bottle of blackberry brandy. (Don’t ask me why we drank that, we were kids). I was tied up at lunch but my friends went out for lunch. When they came back in to school the teacher asked them if he smelled wine. They denied it strongly, so he let them in. When we got out for the day the empty brandy bottle was under the seat of my car. The weasels drank it without me. Those were some fun times and some good people.

ucme's avatar

I love this stuff, keep em coming peeps…

picante's avatar

While reading a report in front of my third-grade class, I peed. A lot. My knee-length socks took the brunt of the leakage, but I was mortified. In fifth grade, I passed out on the playground, and I remember hearing the principal’s stomach rumbling as he carried me to the office.

It would seem I had issues with bodily functions in my early days—my dotage will likely see Part II of this saga.

Coloma's avatar

I wanted to go to school so badly at 4 that I hopped on the school bus with several neighbor kids and sat in one of their first grade classrooms for about 30 minutes before the teacher noticed me.
My poor mother, I just disappeared without a trace!
This was in Santa Fe New Mexico and she was worried that a bobcat or mountain lion drug me off into the arroyos. haha

I actually did get lost in the mountains at about the same age, again, wandered off on my own. I was born a Dora the explorer type, I get an idea and off I go. Still the same way all these years later. lol

bookish1's avatar

In preschool, we had a little puppet theater and I loved to put on puppet shows. Once a girl told me that she had peed her pants and I told her she should tell a teacher because I didn’t know what to do! I was confused by the teachers’ pantyhose and thought that it meant that the skin on their legs was a different color from the rest of their bodies.

In kindergarten, I didn’t have a snack the first day (I guess my mom didn’t know we were ‘required’ to bring one), so everyone gave me some of theirs. I thought the eighth grade monitors were so cool because they knew how to tie shoes and zip my coat up, haha.

Can’t remember the first days of middle school or high school. That period just blew for a long time and I can’t remember clearly through the fog of depression.

My first day of college, I met one of my dearest friends. I ended up that night with a beer in my hand, watching a super cool sophomore drunkenly give another super cool sophomore a haircut with a straight razor. I was terrified that an RA would come in and find out that I was drinking, haha.

dxs's avatar

When I was in Kindergarten, I used to leave the classroom and wander around the school building. Nobody ever said I had to stay in the classroom.

Sunny2's avatar

Waiting in the cloak room because I was being punished. I don’t remember what I did. The teacher forgot I was there and didn’t find me until she was going out the door after school.
Sitting in a circle on the floor and rolling a container of cream back and forth until it turned into butter. (in Wisconsin, of course.)
Told to draw a house and a barn, one kid was scolded because he drew two barns. My mom said, “Maybe he lives in a barn.” That was possible. There were kids from nearby farm country at our school. One boy came to school barefoot, because his shoes were being repaired.

Coloma's avatar

@Sunny2 Oh lord, the poor kid got in trouble for drawing 2 barns? Reminds me of my 2nd grade teacher ” Mrs.Box” that once got angry with me because I painted a creation blue and she didn’t think it should be blue?
WTF!!!?
Oh noooo, I colored outside the “Box.”

She also drug me to the bathroom and tried to scrub off a small birthmark on the inside of my arm thinking it was dirt. When it failed to wash off she was then angry because she was embarrassed!
The most memorable evil teacher award goes to Mrs. Box!

flutherother's avatar

I’m not sure if this was my first day at school but it was one of the first. It was raining and so we were not allowed out at ‘playtime’ and had to stay in a classroom which wasn’t much fun. It was crowded and depressing and we were milling aimlessly about. One of my classmates was eating a chunk of ginger cake and I will always remember that he gave me a big slab of it, almost half his cake. I wasn’t yet five years old.

Coloma's avatar

@flutherother Awww…sharing! haha

TheProfoundPorcupine's avatar

My first memory of High School was sitting near the back of the school bus because my cousin was on there and was keeping an eye on me. The protocol for the school bus was generally that new people were at the front and the oldest, or those that were seen as the nutters, sat at the back.

This made the bus journey a bit easier for me but the main memory of that first trip to a new school was seeing somebody I knew missing the top step of the bus and shooting out of the bus as if they had been fired out of a cannon. I do believe that no part of them hit any step. That is not the kind of entrance you want to make on your first day.

ucme's avatar

I really should be answering this myself now, but I gotta run, getting late here in england town.
I will though leave one quick story, i’d just started the infant school..4/5yrs old & my teacher commented that my trousers looked very smart, “when did your mummy buy those?” she asked, with what seemed like genuine interest, “tomorrow” I replied in all sincerity, or so I thought…daft bugger!

bossob's avatar

I was the last one in my kindergarten class to get the hang of skipping. The teacher thought I was goofing off and stuck me in the corner behind the piano as punishment. Years later, I became a dance teacher; guess I showed her!

Coloma's avatar

^^^ LOL

Coloma's avatar

Oh my, I just remembered bouncing pig fetuses eyeballs around the room in a 9th grade biology class. They bounce like super balls, yes they do! The teacher was not amused.

TheProfoundPorcupine's avatar

I do also remember that we were taken to our High School for a 3 day induction period where we followed what would then be our timetable after the summer holidays. The idea of this was to get you used to the school, where everything was, and to meet your new classmates. Basically on day one we had science and I introduced myself to the science department by knocking over a bunsen burner and setting fire to a curtain. I did not only learn a few things about science that day but I also learnt how to put out a fire.

YARNLADY's avatar

We didn’t have kindergarten where I lived. I started school in the first grade. I went to the first day so excited, I would now be able to learn everything and it was going to be wonderful.

The teacher started with the ABC’s and 1,2,3’s. I was very disappointed. I was already readying and understanding an entire newspaper, and knew addition and subtraction. When I talked to the teacher about it, she let me sit in the back of the room and play with a marvelous box of colored wooden tiles in all different shapes similar to this one and later, I read library books.

bookish1's avatar

@YARNLADY : Wow, the alphabet in first grade??? I remember that we did grammar and sentence structure and things like unit conversion in my first grade class. You are very lucky to have had a kind teacher who let you do your own thing.

Bellatrix's avatar

I remember being in infant school and going to assembly. It was held in the gym and I recall sitting on the floor and looking up at the windows which seemed very high up. We had to sing our school song which was Morning Has Broken. I still like this song and it makes me think of those days.

dxs's avatar

@Bellatrix I love that hymn. Who knows how many times I’ve brought it up here on Fluther…

YARNLADY's avatar

@bookish1 In 1949 small town America, they hadn’t yet heard of kindergarten or preschool. I learned by asking my Mom “What does that say” every few minutes, and she answered me.

bookish1's avatar

@YARNLADY : Thank you for explaining. I was stuck in my own historicity there ;)

augustlan's avatar

I got a late start walking to school one day in kindergarten, and when I got to the road I had to cross to get to the school, the crossing guard wasn’t there. I knew better than to cross the road without the guard, so I sat down on the sidewalk right across the road from the school, figuring I’d just wait until she came back. It seemed to take forever, but I had no real concept of time (still don’t, for that matter), so I just entertained myself in my head and ate my snack when I got hungry.

When the guard came back and found me there, it was time for the morning kindergarteners to go home! She couldn’t believe I’d sat there, all by myself, for almost 4 hours. She said something like, “Oh, honey. It’s time for you to go home, now.” She was awfully sweet about it. I showed up at home at the normal time, so my mom didn’t have a clue until I told her.

cookieman's avatar

Chicken overalls.

My mother sent me to my first day of kindergarten wearing blue overalls with red and yellow chickens all over them.

No wonder why I was picked on all through grade school.

ucme's avatar

The one memory I recall above all others is this, I was standing in line in the classroom waiting to get my maths work marked & I was bursting for a wee. eager to get my work praised by teacher & not wanting to lose my place, I didn’t ask to go to the toilet…big mistake!
By the time I was getting to the front of line I was now practically tying a knot in my pecker, i’d placed my maths book, pages open over my crotch, thinking if a little pee did come out, it’d be concealed. Eventually I handed over my book for teacher to mark &...well, let’s just say the pages were a little damp, the sums running into each other.
She immediately told me to go to the toilet, but by now my shame was complete.

Leanne1986's avatar

My earliest memory from school was, I believe, in my first year. My teacher was called Mrs Fenton and we were about to do a PE (sport) lesson. I thought I had lost my kit but when Mrs Fenton went into the coat cupboard (where the PE kits were kept) she found it very easily. I remember her telling me off and, I think I cried. I can’t remember whether I was lying about losing my kit to try and get out of PE, which I hated, or if I genuinly thought I couldn’t find it. She obviously thought it was the latter!

I have loads of others, some good, some bad from throughout my school days but that stands out the most as it is a first memory.

dxs's avatar

I was so awkward as a middle schooler. Those are the most embarrassing memories.

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